Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis on Thursday informed the state legislative council that the proposed international airport in Navi Mumbai is expected to be operational by 2019.
Responding to a question raised by Congress leaders Sanjay Dutta and Bhai Jagtap and others, Fadnavis said the process of getting permits and licences from the various departments will be completed by next January and the first phase of the airport will begin operations by 2019.
The proposed airport had already acquired 592-hectares of land and all major clearances had been received. “Only a few sanctions are pending and we expect to have all the clearances by January 2015,” he said.
The chief minister also said the government is looking at beginning the bidding process for construction and operation of the project once the clearances have been received. “The airport project is expected to cost approximately Rs 14,573 crore,” he said.
While City and Industrial Development Corporation of Maharashtra (Cidco) is the nodal agency for the proposed airport, the project is based on the public-private partnership model and is expected to give a new direction for the development of state.
ST status for Dhangar?
In response to a question about the reservation row for the state’s Dhangar community, revenue minister Eknath Khadse said the government was looking at setting up a committee to ensure the Dhangars get the scheduled tribe (ST) status. The government will adopt the committee’s recommendations in both houses and then send them to the Union government for consideration, he added.
The Opposition had questioned the government if it intended to keep its pre-poll promise of reservation status for community.
In the weeks leading up to the elections, the Dhangar community had launched an agitation across the state demanding ST status. Devendra Fadnavis, Vinod Tawde, Pankaja Munde and other BJP leaders had extended their support to their agitation, and assured the community of change.